Now to be perfectly honest I think I was a pretty awesome kid, alright so I made my mum quite poorly while she was pregnant and she had to be induced a month early, I didn’t sleep..at all.. for the first 18 months of my life and screamed whenever I was put down, but who doesn’t love a mummy snuggle right?
It all started when boy met girl, my dad was in the Navy and was home on leave, he called for a friend and his friends pushy big sister wouldn’t let him in because she thought he was there to beat him up, not really love at first sight.
My mum had been married before and had a son and daughter from the marriage. My parents alway joke that I’m the result of a dirty weekend and knowing them I’m sure its true. I was born in Kingston Upon Thames hospital, in 1982. Having 2 older siblings I’m sure I was doted on when I was small and I probably loved being the baby of the family, a status that was rudely snatched from me 19 months later when my younger brother was born.
Around about my 4th or 5th year on this planet my parents moved us from the hustle and bustle of South East London to the relative peace of Stevenage Borough. At the time Stevenage was a nice town which was newly developed as an overspill for London, we had a direct rail connection into London and a town centre full of the promise of a growing economy. The house prices were cheaper and we’d moved from a flat to a house with 2 gardens, it was like a rural paradise…oh how my beautiful town changed!!
Shortly after we moved up my dads brother and his wife and children moved up too, so we had cousins and family close by, we left both sets of grandparents and my mums brother back in London and unfortunately grew distant over time.
As far as childhoods go mine was pretty uneventful, I had very few hospital visits, one for a cut foot when I thought a mirror propped up against a wall would make a good slide and another when I used a storage heater as a swing and it landed on my ankle, I managed to walk round with a broken ankle for 4 hours before confessing to the pain.. I’m that stubborn, no way would I let my dad be right when he had warned me a million times that it would happen.
I loved school, for now, and always brought home good reports. I loved reading and playing outdoors. Being grounded was the worst thing in the world for me, I couldn’t bear to be stuck in the house and would do anything to get out early, including polish my dads car. Stevenage was a pretty safe place when I was younger and we lived on a cul-de-sac so even from about 5 years old we were allowed to play out the front, as we grew our boundaries were extended to the park around the corner or down the street to our friends house. My brother and I shared quite a few friends who had siblings the same ages as us. We were fiercely protective over each other, we could beat each other up but no one else was allowed to say a bad word about the other one. All through junior school Marc was smaller than me and a lot chubbier, at home we had nicknamed him “porky” a name i’m sure the mums of today would be horrified at, but we meant it with love.. My nickname was smell. I was slim and tall in juniors, even though we were quit different people always thought Marc and I were twins, funnily enough I get asked the same about my children now.
I must admit that we used to find entertainment in climbing trees and garages, scrumping for the local cherry trees and the odd game of knock down ginger, we weren’t angels but we were generally good kids.
My favourite memories of growing up were the days out to clacton on sea, our holidays abroad to places like Corfu, Malta and Portugal and our weekends away to our caravan in Hopton Holiday Village in Lowestoft. We were very lucky, my dad worked his way up in his company by studying at night and my mum had a part time job working in the school kitchens, they worked hard to provide us with a nice home and a holidays and I’m sure we were never as grateful as we should have been.
Christmas was always, and still is, a massive affair in our house, my mum had a special dinner service set that only came out for big occasions, we had special serving spoons for each lidded ceramic bowl and the table was always laid to perfection, not that anyone could tell as it was always chocablock with delicious food, we ate lots, the adults drank lots and we played lots, I’m very nostalgic when it comes to christmas and have started lots of christmas traditions with my kids that I hope they will look back at with the same warm memories that I have.
Please don’t forget to drop by Emma at The Stationery Geekette and see her post on todays topic.